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Minister Madigan launches ‘Ceiliúradh agus Comóradh Céad Bliain 1916 - 1916 Centenary Commemorations and Celebrations’ a book of 1916 themed speeches by the President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins

Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan TD, today (12 December) hosted the launch of ‘Ceiliúradh agus Comóradh Céad Bliain 1916 - 1916 Centenary Commemorations and Celebrations’, a book of 1916-themed speeches delivered by the President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins.
The Minister welcomed the publication as a worthy and valuable collection containing 35 speeches by President Higgins, delivered all around Ireland over a 2 year period straddling the core centenary year of 2016 at both local and national events.
The Minister remarked that: “This book is a substantive volume of well-considered reflections on the theme of commemoration. Those reflections coupled with great insight, empathy and hope inform the speeches and make each entirely accessible to a wide audience. The GPO, the cradle of our modern independent State is an entirely fitting place to launch this collection of the President’s considered and thoughtful speeches on the theme of commemoration over the centenary period of the 1916 Rising.”
The Taoiseach recently remarked that “the best commemorations are the ones that use the past to educate us about the present so we can work for a better future”. The thread running through the speeches by the President informs this view, with the President’s firm belief in the importance of ‘ethical remembrance’ as a vital foundation and resource “to enable us to make a fist of living together in the present”.
The book was introduced in remarks by Gearóid Ó Tuathaigh, Professor Emeritus in History at NUI Galway – widely recognised as a most versatile, energetic, erudite and accomplished intellectual.
The book was produced by the Department in co-operation with the Office of the President and partners BigO Media and Impress Printers. It is free to download as an eBook from from today.

Notes for Editors:

1. The book is the final initiative planned in the very successful and well received Ireland 2016 Programme under the wider Decade of Centenaries programme of commemorations 2012-2023 led by Minister Madigan on behalf of the Government.

2. The Minister enjoys the support, advice and good counsel of both the Expert Advisory Group on Centenary Commemorations and the All-Party Consultation Group on Commemorations in informing the planning and development of the programme.

3. The programme is delivered by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and a number of partners, particularly the local authorities, and other stakeholders that already have a strong track record in delivering the programme to date.

4. The Minister expects that they will continue to deliver as the Decade of Centenaries enters a very different phase covering the centenary commemoration of a combination of significant milestones on Ireland’s path to full independence and some very contentious, difficult and sensitive elements.